Records of the State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee, Lot 52–M45

Memorandum by the Acting Chairman of the State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee

SWNNC 176/4

“The Basic Initial Directive to the Commander in Chief, U.S. Army Forces in the Pacific for the Administration of Civil Affairs—Korea South of 38 Degrees North Latitude” is now before the JCS for their comments from a military point of view. The recent report that the U.S. Commander in Korea has decided temporarily to retain the Japanese Governor-General and other Japanese officials in Korea has already had an unfortunate effect on our position in Korea and is contrary to the general intent and policies outlined in the directive mentioned above.

To expedite the adoption as quickly as possible of policies which will be consistent with the proposed directive and which will further [Page 1045]the interests of the United States, it is recommended that the SWNCC approve the attached draft message to the Commander in Chief, U.S. Army Forces in the Pacific, at Appendix, and transmit it to the JCS as a matter of urgency for their comment from a military point of view.

It is further recommended that after approval by SWNCC and the JCS the draft message at Appendix be forwarded by the JCS.

[Appendix]

Draft Message to General of the Army Douglas Mac Arthur 58

Unfavorable publicity has resulted from recent reports that the U.S. commander in Korea has decided temporarily to retain in office the Japanese Governor General and other Japanese officials in Korea.

It is not believed If the report is correct the S.W.N.[C.C.] do not believe that the services of the Japanese officials named below are essential by reason of technical qualifications. (Refer to para. 2 of summary of proposed directive Warx 6196759). Furthermore For political reasons it is advisable that you should remove them from office immediately Governor-General Abe, Chiefs of all bureaus of the Government-General, provincial governors and provincial police chiefs. You should furthermore proceed as rapidly as possible with the removal of other Japanese and collaborationist Korean administrators.

  1. Approved by the State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee on September 11. The draft was amended by the Joint Chiefs of Staff on September 14 whereby lined portions were deleted and underscored portions added. The State-War-Navy Coordinating Committee concurred in the amendments on the same day.
  2. Copy not found in Department files.